'Baalveer Returns' to bridge quality gap between TV and OTT: Sony Sab's Neeraj Vyas

This is SPN’s first show which is digital-first

MUMBAI: Sony Sab is aiming to reduce the quality gap between channels and OTT platform with the launch of its new show Baalveer Returns. Baalveer Returns is the first show from Sony Pictures Network India which is digital-first. The show will be streamed on Sony LIV at 9 am for paid subscribers and it will be telecast on Sony Sab at 8 pm from 10 September.  

Sony SAB, PAL and Sony MAX movie cluster business head Neeraj Vyas said, “Television today is competing with OTT which essentially is about binge-watch, less number of episodes and the quality that they deliver will also be a challenge for TV to match. But this one show will be bridging the quality gap. The show will go a long way in enhancing the perception of the channel and the brand even more than what it is.”

For the past few weeks, Sony Sab has been consistently seen at number 2 or 3 in the top 10 Hindi GEC channels list of BARC India ratings. With the launch of the new show, the channel expects that its efforts and time taken in creating ‘Baalveer Returns’ gets transformed into ratings.

However, Vyas is of the view that more than ratings, the attempt is to get people to take note of the quality.

The channel is also elated that even in a post-NTO world, subscribers have decided to pay Rs 15 for Sony Sab. "Ratings is one reality but it is not the only reality which means we have to work on the quality of the product that we deliver day in and day out," he said.

Giving more details into the show, Vyas said, “Baalveer is not just a show, it’s a legend! Years ago, when we showcased Baalveer on Sony SAB, it quickly gained a huge fan following. We are expecting this fan following to become bigger than ever with the launch of Baalveer Returns. This show is a true example of fantasy done right. With cutting edge VFX which will delight, stunt work that will boggle the mind and performances that will move, Baalveer Returns is going to be an epic adventure that audiences are sure to fall in love with. With a universal theme of Good vs. Evil, the show will appeal to everyone – young and old alike and is a true representation of the kind of content Sony SAB is appreciated for – values driven and with a heart. The show fits beautifully with our commitment to provide happiness and we believe it has got all the ingredients to become a massive hit.”

Sony Pictures Networks CEO NP Singh said, “Sab is in its fifteenth year now. In April 2004 we re-launched SAB after the acquisition of the channel as Sony SAB. I am very proud and satisfied as it is one of the most stable channels in the genre. For the last couple of months, SAB has been in the top three channels.”

He further said, “A new fresh energised SAB is something that we are showcasing now, from being a comedy channel it has now become a channel for family. After the NTO implementation SAB’s audiences have remained loyal to the channel and our subscriber numbers are also increasing month on month. With the launch of Baalveer Returns, it is expected to grow further. Time spent on the channel has grown dramatically. People not only subscribe to it but also watch it on a regular basis which is reflecting when the ratings come."

SonyLIV Digital Business business Head Uday Sodhi commented, “We are excited to bring this iconic show to our digital viewers in India on our OTT platform. For the first time ever, Baalveer Returns will be available on SonyLIV a few hours prior to its televised broadcast to all premium subscribers. This is an innovation to get the mobile-first audience to watch the show and add to the excitement that the show offers. SonyLIV has always been a frontrunner in streaming relatable content to its viewers and this is our endeavour in that direction.”

Optimystix Entertainment founding chairman & MD Vipul D Shah said, “Baalveer Returns has been produced such that it revolutionises the way people watch fantasy dramas on television. Besides the new cast, a lot of effort has gone into designing the costumes and the sets, so that we provide a thrilling, edge-of-the-seat, visual treat to the viewers. The fans are in for a real extravaganza! Besides the look and feel of the show, a lot of fine work has gone into the scripting which will get the fans hooked on to the show and we hope to receive the same love & approval they have shown before.”

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